The Coastal Packet: House strikes down bill that would ban taxpayer funded Internet

Thursday, May 4

House strikes down bill that would ban taxpayer funded Internet

Ars Technica - Cities and towns in Maine that want to provide their own broadband service just helped defeat a proposed law that would have made it impossible to build taxpayer-funded networks.

Municipal officials and one ISP that has partnered with a city for a municipal project objected to the bill in a hearing on Tuesday. The next day, a legislative technology committee voted 12-0 against the bill, "effectively killing it," the Press Herald wrote in a followup article. The Maine House has a 77-71 Democratic majority.

Maine has plenty of sparsely populated areas where building networks isn't that profitable. But the proposed Maine law would have prohibited municipalities from using tax dollars to subsidize broadband service and imposed various other restrictions that would make it more difficult for cities and towns to build their own networks.

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